Archive for September, 2014

Mysore revolution in the sticks – week 2

September 28, 2014

With AYL closed for building work at least I’ve been able to get in another 3 consecutive mornings at the local Shala, as it continues to trial the early morning Mysore experiment. Over the 3 days we had nearly the same total of students come along this week, but the spread each day was more even, week 1 was 14, 5 & 1, week 2 has been 9, 5 & 5. Two of us did all 3 days this week.

The 9 body’s on Wednesday (moon days don’t count in the sticks!) warmed the space up nicely, and great to not be the last in there, with a couple of others doing a chunk of intermediate.


Thursday morning was cold and I never really seemed to get warm, 5 people isn’t enough to steam the windows up on such a cold morning. My left knee was annoyed and didn’t want to play either, though the real surprise was the best ever attempt at (my illegal) Kapotasana, I landed a lot nearer my feet, but can’t work out how to then move the hands towards the feet, but it’s fun trying and really helps loosen my back up for Urdva Dhanurasana and dropbacks.

Friday 5 of us again, which pretty soon became two, me and L, as the others finished at half primary or ran off to work after 75 minutes. At least Friday morning was much warmer and L is another who adds the chunk of 2nd to Kapo, she started after me and was around 6 postures behind, this worked well as we both got assistance in Pasasana , Bhekasana , Dhanurasana and dropbacks.


Growing an early morning Mysore program from scratch is hard enough in a city, but out in the countryside where the potential pool of ashtangi’s is a lot smaller, it’s really difficult and is probably going to take a long time to bear fruit. There is still a culture of yoga being something people attend once a week, even if they practice at home. And the cost to family budgets is another big consideration for many.

The 6:30am start is convenient for the majority who do half primary or a little more, they can practice and still be at work by 8:30-9:00am, but for the (very) few of us with longer practices going in to intermediate, it could do with starting earlier, when we don’t even finish until 8:30am, joining the rat race in time is impossible.

This is going to be the case for me for the next few months. After nearly two years of injury, surgery, recovery and unemployment I’m finally rejoining the rat race next week after seeing a random job advert last week on Facebook of all places. It’s only temporary and part time, but it’s a start on the road back to normality.


A Mysore revolution in the sticks

September 19, 2014


Our local Shala is attempting an Ashtanga revolution this month by trying to start an early morning Mysore program, 6:30-8:30am. Since the Shala opened 4 years ago it’s Mysore classes have been 3 mid mornings and a couple of evenings, which are convenient for the towns Yummy Mummies and the leisured, but not great for for people who have to work.

This week was the first week of the three extra early practices. Wednesday morning at 6:30am 14 students unrolled their mats, wow for a small town what a start, however Thursday it was just 5 of us and today, well I was the only student, so Cathy the teacher practised with me. A really nice practice to Kapo.

Wednesday 14 students

Yes I know I’m “legally” only up to Bhekasana, but with the arm problems I did Kapo hanging as soon as I could get back on my mat after the last surgery to give me a backbend without my arm taking part. Cathy uses a DG assist involving 6 bricks you attempt to walk the hands along towards the feet. I know Kapo officially will be a while, but hopefully it won’t be such a shock when the time does come.

For some people with a longer practice who work I think 6am would be better, my practice regularly hits two hours with the backbends, closing and Svasana, not to mention the local Shala offers the the chance of a bit of experimentation, trying Ustrasana and Kapotasana with blocks a la David Garrigues, Cathy has studied with David and often uses his adjustments and props.

Hopefully the masses will return to the revolution next Wednesday.

Denting the Floor

September 14, 2014

The private physiotherapy is almost over, it’s done it’s work in giving me back around 90% of my left shoulders range of motion. The strength is going to take a while longer. The last couple of weeks I’ve begun to feel it in my practice, primary feels (relatively) comfortable again for the first time in 18 months, I just need to find a bit more strength for the Bakhasana jump backs, but I can bind everything.

Strength is coming back in places, Bekhasana has gone from struggling to keep hold of the foot as Louise assists me to now being able to put downward pressure on the left foot as she lifts my chest. Urdva Dhanurasana on a dry surface I’m beginning to be able to walk my hands in, a combo or ROM and strength returning.

Dropbacks are still erratic, last week I crashed on my head, quite a bang, T next door stopped to see if I was conscious! This week I landed safely four times without denting the floor. At the Shala, in the heat and energy I’m a spent force by the time I get to backbends, so once I land I’m stuck, I can’t walk in and rock as I do at home, not to mention the saturated mat my hands are sliding on. I still live in hope of standing up by my Standupversary.

Philosophy group lunch

Our monthly Yoga Philosophy group got through another 10 sutras, this is taking a while, Patanjali may have written a sequel by the time we get to the end!

The local Shala is running a trial the next two weeks, 3 mornings of early morning Mysore to see if there is enough demand, my only concern is the temperature, nothing compares to AYL in this country and at 6:30am as autumn feels like heading towards winter yoga in thermals doesn’t appeal.